All About Spider Veins (Including How to Get Rid of Them)
It’s been an especially hot summer, and on scorching days, most of us enjoy cooling off with the right clothing, like shorts and tank tops. If you’re one of the many who suffers from spider veins on your legs, though, that may not feel like an option. Or, if you have the common frustration of facial spider veins, you may be burdened by visible spider veins all year long.
Fortunately, the solution to your spider veins may be simpler than you expect. Our expert team at Dermatology Associates of Atlanta is breaking down the details of spider veins, including what causes them, how to remove them, and how to potentially prevent them in the future.
What Causes Spider Veins?
Spider veins have the same underlying cause as varicose veins. There are valves in your veins that help to push the blood toward your heart, but sometimes these valves weaken and allow some blood to flow back the wrong way. This blood pools in certain areas, dilating the veins and making them visible under your skin.
While spider veins are small veins below the surface of your skin, varicose veins are larger, and they become raised above the surface of your skin. They typically have a blue hue, and they look lumpy and often twisted.
Spider veins are most common in your legs because the valves in your legs are working against gravity to push blood up to your heart. Spider veins are also common in the face, though.
How to Get Rid of Spider Veins
There are a variety of treatment options for spider veins, so you should always begin by scheduling a vein treatment consultation. A specialist will be able to assess your veins and determine the best treatment options for you.
Spider veins in the legs can be treated with laser vein removal, Veinwave™ thermocoagulation, or a procedure called sclerotherapy. In sclerotherapy, we inject a specific solution into the targeted veins to close off these veins and allow them to naturally disappear. For facial spider veins, your options may include V-Beam Perfecta, laser vein removal, intense pulsed light or IPL treatments, or Veinwave™.
Treating varicose veins depends on the veins themselves. In some mild cases, sclerotherapy can be effective, though some varicose veins can only be properly and safely treated with a minimally invasive surgery. In this case, we would refer you to a specialist.
How to Prevent New Spider Veins
You have likely heard old wives’ tales about what causes spider veins, and while some have a grain of truth, many do not. There are several factors that make some people more prone to unwanted veins than others, including genetics, but there are several steps you can take to lower your risk:
- Exercise regularly to tone your leg muscles and improve your circulation.
- Wear sunscreen when your skin will be exposed to the sun because sun exposure can increase the risk of spider veins.
- Avoid sitting or standing for long periods at a time. Specifically, aim to take a break every hour or so by moving around for a few minutes.
- Reach or maintain a healthy weight, as obesity can make spider veins more likely.
- Avoid wearing overly restrictive clothing like excessively tight pants.
It’s important to note that you may not be able to fully prevent unwanted veins because there are so many potential contributing factors. Still, the tips above will make these veins less likely to appear.
If you are ready to tackle your spider veins, schedule an appointment with our specialty center Atlanta Center for Veins. Until October 1st, 2021, you can take advantage of our special offer on select vein treatments with Danna Dennis Calder, M.M.Sc., PA-C. See our specials and events page for more details. Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more tips on spider veins and other aspects of skincare.